As Australians, we have many things to pride ourselves with from a culturally diverse country to a prosperous economy. But these are not just what defines our identity.
We are also seen by peoples in other countries as organic food lovers. Just look at this fact: Australia hosts the majority of global farm area that is under certified organic farming. Hard to believe? Have a look at Australian Organic Market Report 2019, produced by the Australian Organic.
You may also like to some key facts of the global organic food industry. Globally, organic farmland represents 14% of the cultivated area, and it is rising continually. According to the World Organic Report 2019, organic farmland increased by 11.7 million hectares or 20 percent in 2017, the largest increase ever recorded. The global market of organic products stands close to US$100 billion. And the exciting news is that organic producers are growing at a rate of 5% globally. This is almost equal to the Global Pharmaceutics industry which is growing at 4-7% according to the ValueChainInsights.
Out of the $130 billion Australian food industry, the current share of organics is 1.5% but it is likely to grow to 12-17% in the next 20-30 years, according to the Organic Federation of Australia (cited by a report “Accessing Premium Markets: Australian Organics” of Australian Department of Agriculture).
Now, let’s get into the details of different states and territories in Australia. Different states in Australia have niche markets: Queensland for beef and livestock fodder, South Australia for wine grapes and winemaking, New South Wales for a number of plant and animal products, and Victoria for organic dairy products. Northern Territory, ACT, Western Australia and Tasmania also supply a wide range of plant and animal products to Australia’s growing organic food system.
2020 has been a turbulent and unprecedented year, creating a lot of uncertainty around health and lifestyle. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen more themselves about organic products and choosing to convert to organic.
Australians have responded well and wisely to the crisis of COVID 19. A report highlights that sales of certified organic products – food, beverages, alcohol, homecare and personal hygiene products – have increased by an astounding 50 per cent as consumers seek out health and safety for all aspects of their lives during this unprecedented time.
With no vaccine for this virus yet, these past couple of months has been shrouded in uncertainty. And from uncertainty comes a need for more control. Consumers are becoming more conscious of what they eat and actively seeking brands they can trust. After all, what we choose to put in our body is one of the few things that we can control to build immunity to health risks.